Chapter thirty-two. What will be in your safe?

Good question isn't it?

If our system crashes all of your savings will vanish. Stocks and bonds become just paper. Paper money reverts to its intrinsic value, that of sheets of fancy paper. Your retirement checks stop. Your Social Security checks stop. Your car will run out of gasoline and there wont be anyone to sell you fuel for that paper money you may have stashed. Food will vanish and truckers wont be bringing more.

It won't be practical to carry a chicken to the gas station to trade for gas! Those who believe they will be bartering may be right - slightly. But not for long. We are simply not a society like in the days of old where bartering could work. Yes, if you are Amish you will do well. The rest of us are simply not geared to bartering. What do you have to trade anyhow? Food? You are going to "sell" your food supply? I think not! Anyhow, think about it.

Sounds like a movie or two you have watched doesn't it?

Assuming you were smart enough to store up food and water, you can still eat long enough to wait for the system to recover in some ways and to once again offer supplies. 

If you were smart enough to have guns and ammo you can maintain your safety until things somehow normalize, perhaps under a different system of some kind. Plus you may be able to retain what you have stored up.

Buying and selling things, anything, will become a problem. What will things be worth when the dollar disappears? How can we decide this? What will be of any value?

Will silver and gold be used for exchange? MAYBE. Will there be a new world currency? Maybe. Maybe not. We cannot know for sure. No world-wide collapse has ever taken place before. This scenario is off the charts. A study of history can give us clues as to what to expect, but it won't be a certainty.

Long ago people traded services and products for "precious metal". Anciently the Egyptians used gold with which to buy. Back then it was iffy at best. The gold used was not always the same. Its purity was sometimes questionable and every trade needed to be weighed out with scales. "I'll sell you this cow for a half ounce of gold." You weigh it out on known scales and deliver it to the seller who hands you the rope with a cow attached to it. Done deal.

Even as imprecise as that deal was it was far better than carrying around loads of oil or seeds to try to exchange. Eventually, the metals became measured and molded and people could tell precisely what they were getting. The amount of metal in existence was finite and it retained a store of value and eventually would become the known medium of exchange.

IF the dollar crashes today we may be able to use precious metals. 


If so, you need to know some of the following:

Today we have gold and silver in known purity and known sizes. Precious metal, gems, and drugs are measured in troy ounces with twelve ounces making a pound. Many people don’t realize that an ounce of gold (and other precious metals) is weighed in a different weighing system called "troy weights". A troy ounce is heavier than the typical ounce found at the grocery store and elsewhere for many things. The "grocery" ounce is called the avoirdupois ounce. Here is where it can be confusing now.

One avoirdupois ounce is 28.35 grams
One troy ounce is about 31.1 grams.

An avoirdupois pound contains 16 ounces. A troy pound contains 12 troy ounces. So you see one troy ounce weighs more than one Avoirdupois ounce, but since there are more ounces (16) in a pound than in a troy pound (12) the Avoirdupois "pound" weighs more than a troy pound.

While I hope you never need to know all this - it is here to help you become more knowledgeable. There is a lot more with grams and such. But, basically you need to know how to weigh precious metals if it comes to that, and you need to know that regular scales wont do. You need to weigh in grams, and use the 31.1 figure for each ounce. If you start buying or using 28.35 grams for an ounce of silver you will be losing a lot of value in a hurry. If nothing else memorize the 31.1 grams figure.

It is important to know when determining the validity of silver as well. If an ounce bullion bar is off even a little from 31.1 grams BEWARE! Something is wrong!

31.1 grams

For US silver coins just remember the year 1964. That was the last year our coins contained 90% silver. Starting with 1965 and after, forget it! Just too confusing. Leave those to the experts to determine for now.

Older than 1965 US coins.